Where Were You for Last Year's Earthquake?

A 5.8 magnitude earthquake hit the East Coast one year ago today.

One year ago today, a 5.8 earthquake centered near Richmond, Va., affected much of the East Coast.

You don't need me to tell you that East Coast earthquakes are quite rare.

Yet we've had two in the past couple of years, and I missed them both.

Sort of.

The first one, a couple of years ago, came and went with the explanation that the tenants on the second floor of the building I worked in were doing some work.

Only after it was confirmed as an earthquake did my colleagues and I say, "Oh, so that's what that rolling thunder-like noise was."

Last year's event, which was confirmed as a 5.8 magnitude quake by the U.S. Geological Survey, was much more apparent and left quite a bit of damage in its wake.

And here's how I missed that one.

I was having an intense work day, and wasn't able to get away for lunch until much later than usual.

As I was leaving the building to go across the street to a deli to get a sandwich, we in the newsroom again heard rumbling upstairs and again assumed it was the second-floor tenants.

We joked about it being an earthquake and that was that.

I left the building, got in my car and traveled about two miles (if that) to the deli.

The earthquake did its thing while I was in my car, and I didn't feel a thing.

When I parked my car and walked across the shopping center lot, I saw a woman coming out of a bank looking a little dazed. She was walking funny and mumbling to herself.

"A little early in the day to be drinking like that," I remember thinking to myself.

When I got back to the office with my sandwich, word was out that it was indeed an earthquake and I joined the few colleagues in the newsroom to put together our local coverage of the event and its impact.

I've since talked to other people who happened to be in their cars when it hit, and they didn't feel anything either.

I don't know whether the rubber tires provide insulation, or the movement of the car negates the quake's tremors or what.

All I know it that I missed perhaps the biggest geological happening of the past century (or longer) on the East Coast.

Story of my life.

What are your memories of last year's earthquake? Tell me in the comments section below.

Anna August 24, 2012 at 04:53 PM
I happened to be leaving work,(Mars in Middleriver)I I was sitting in my car, just turned the ignition and my car began to smoothly rock and roll side ways. I had just bought my car and thought something was wrong with it. It finally stopped, I drove home (Dundalk) to find my mom scared to death because she said she was sitting on the couch and said it had jumped off the floor with her on it. At least I knew at that point there was nothing wrong with my car.


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